How to Be a Minimalist AND a Bookworm

One of my other interests, asides from books, is minimalism.

Minimalism is more than a white, bare room aesthetic; it’s a way of thinking and intentionally living, and I find that very appealing. There’s no right way to be a minimalist (or a bookworm, for that matter). To me, intentionally living as a bookworm means keeping the amount of books I own to a minimum by rarely purchasing physical books and getting rid of those of no value to me. Being a bookworm, it’s easy to get carried away with buying books and adding to the seemingly never-ending TBR pile. So, while my virtual TBR is always growing on Goodreads, I don’t have an actual pile of books in my home making me guilty or anxious about all the books I have to read. 

There’s nothing wrong with collecting books. However, if you’re at the point where you’re filled with dread rather than excitement when you see your cluttered bookshelf, then maybe you should consider downsizing. Go through your TBR pile and carefully decide if you’re ever going to read each book and donate books that you don’t absolutely love.

So, how do I read my books if I’m not buying them in bookstores?


I have yet to come across a book I’ve wanted to read that isn’t digitalized. Ebooks are a great alternative to buying physical books because they save living space and trees.


Not everyone is prepared to give up the comfort of flipping through a book and getting a  whiff of its smell. That’s where libraries come in!

Related: A Libby (an Overdrive Library) App Appreciation Post

You can check out something tangible, save living space, and save money. There’s no (or at least not as much) guilt or frustration in picking up a bad book because you can always return it knowing you didn’t spend a dime on it.


If you don’t have access to a library and prefer physical books, friends can be libraries!

Since moving abroad for college, I’ve come to understand the struggle of not having a decent library to check out recreational reads. I’m lucky enough to have a number of friends who are willing to share books that they have bought in exchange for something priceless: 

~ f r i e n d s h i p ~.

Thanks for reading this quick post! Are you interested in minimalism? Do you take measures to control your TBR? What you think of mine? Let me know 😊.

27 thoughts on “How to Be a Minimalist AND a Bookworm

  1. I actually went through a minimalism phrase too (you’re probably doing it better then I am though 😂). For me minimalism means throwing out unnecessary things that do nothing except stress you out to clear your head and living space. Books are neither stressful or unnecessary for me ergo I keep full bookshevles of them (or that’s what I keep telling myself anyway). The rest of the unnecessary things I throw out and it feels a million times better ❤.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol *insert “it’s not a phase, mom” meme*.
      That’s good for you! That’s the perfect example of how minimalism can mean different things for everyone (although we have similar ideas). I wish I could keep my bookshelves full, but I’ve discovered that keeping my living space as clear as possible makes me feel better 😊.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Ah I’m quite similar, I have a huge GoodReads tbr that’s always growing, but I rarely ever buy physical books (I prefer ebooks). This was such an interesting post! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I know – it’s so useful for keeping track of ALL the books we want to read (although that may not always be that helpful haha).


  3. I love this post so much! In the last year I went through my books and I have been getting more books from the library and in ebook form. I feel so much more relax and happy with my surroundings.


  4. This is a great post! I am new to WordPress and also to embracing elements of minimalism, in my first post I ponder over the contradiction of being a lover of books and embracing minimalism so I am so glad I found this post! I definitely only keep my very favourites and I also have a kindle. A friend and I also do a book swap with those good books you enjoy but only really need to read once, then once we both read it we donate to charity

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you and welcome to WordPress! Right?! I think trying to embrace minimalism really makes you reflect about the things you truly value enough to keep in your life, and it’s so refreshing. That’s nice that you and your friends give books to charity. I like the idea of someone receiving and enjoying a book that may have just collected dust on someone else’s bookshelf 🙂.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. absolutely! sometimes i will write a little message in the front too, just saying, “enjoy this book it brought me joy” or something 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. This post is so interesting! I’d love to be minimalist because I really like the concept but I’m really bad at it because well I can’t read books on a screen, I’m nostalgic and I like to have a drawer with many memories, but I TRY.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Haha, it’s okay if you can’t read books on a screen or like to keep sentimental items (I struggle with this too). You can still be a minimalist in other ways. Keep trying lol 😄.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I totally love going to the library also! I am also a minimalist but I can’t get into ebooks. I’ll suffer through them if necessary but it’s just not as much fun as turning pages!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I see a lot of book bloggers that haul a ton of books, but I am SO frugal when it comes to book buying because I know I will read the book quickly and I rarely re-read. I do get a lot of ARCs– but most of them are eARCs. If I want more physical books I try and catch a local library’s used book sale (most libraries have one!) where the books are super cheap. (Anywhere from .25 cents to $1.00 a book!) After starting the book blog I did notice that I had way too many books and they were starting to take up a ton of space, so I did a clean out and donated two boxes completely full of books that I would never re-read or never read in the first place to the local library. (Some of them were books I had picked up at that libraries used book sale– I basically rented the book for a dollar!) I think there are a lot of ways to be frugal with books and be a book blogger, but also to be a minimalist and be a book blogger. We don’t all need to have those overflowing shelves. Instead of hoarding books it is MUCH more satisfying to see the books that you LOVE or the books that you’re dying to read on your shelves than books that you’re not really excited about.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I rarely reread books too! That’s a big a big reason why I don’t see the point of having a giant bookshelf.

      Also, library book sales are a great way to pick up cheap books! (You’re right that you basically rented those books though 😂.) Thrift shops also have super cheap books, but I find that it takes a little more digging to find something current (which isn’t a problem if you like older stories!).

      More people should adopt that mentality of actually keeping books they’re excited about—having less physical books doesn’t mean you’re any less of a book blogger. I think people are realizing that as book hoarding and the cons of TBRs are being discussed more in the book community. It’s great to see people remedying those habits with posts like Down the TBR hole 🙂.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, I basically never re-read unless it is one of my all time favorites. I don’t have a lot of second hand book stores near me, or rather really any book stores besides Barnes and Noble, but I do live in a relatively decent size city so there are a lot of libraries around and each of them have a book sale at least once a year. So I try to catch them when I can! But when re-donating a book it’s like I rented it for a year for a dollar, which is awesome. You should see if any of your libraries have book sales if you want to do something similar. When I went to donate my books I felt like I really didn’t want to get rid of any, but when I started filling the box I realized how many books I wasn’t going to read or wasn’t going to re-read.

        When following book bloggers on Instagram I feel like everyone has TONS of physical books. Most of my books are e-books, but I also just don’t have the money to buy all the new books that I want to read. I’m going to finish it so quickly so I don’t see the point in spending 15-25 dollars for each book I read when I can borrow books from libraries or find titles that I would love to read at a library book sale for a dollar.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Hey Belle!
    I absolutely agree 🙂 For about a year now, I decided to not buy physical copies of books anymore. Since then I’ve purchased eBooks/audiobooks or borrowed books from the library. Not only did I reduce clutter but also saved a LOT of money haha 🙂 Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Sophie 🙂! I’m glad you’ve had so much success in cutting down your book clutter! You made a good point there also—minimalism is refreshing AND economical 😂.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Yay for libraries. They have been my saving grace.
    I’m not a fan of ebooks.
    Like you, I do not have too much space for books. I wish I had more. maybe you should form a book club among your classmates so that you can each get a book and then lend it to one another, so you keep the costs low, the space low, but you get to read multiple books and exchange your thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Libraries are truly so special, yet so many people take them for granted. I’m glad you’ve been able to make use of yours!
      More space would be nice! Space is definitely a contributing factor to why I want to downsize my books, but I mostly just don’t want the clutter of so many books 🙂.
      That’s a really great idea to form a book club! However, I recently finished school and moved back to a place where I thankfully have access to a library 😅. I technically had a sort of unofficial book club with my friends, though formalizing the club and expanding it to more classmates would have been fun.
      Thanks for your comment 😁.

      Liked by 1 person

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